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Alaska trip planning tutorial: Join us April 9

By Katie Gerber / April 2, 2024 /

Alaska is home to arguably the best backpacking in North America and planning a trip there requires careful consideration of factors that are unique to that location. Join Andrew and I on April 9 for a discussion on how to plan a backpacking trip to places such as the Brooks Range, Wrangell-St. Elias, Denali National…

Video Tutorial: How to plan a backpacking trip in 7 steps

By Katie Gerber / March 7, 2024 /

Last night Andrew and I hosted a 55-minute tutorial on trip planning. If you joined us, thank you. If you didn’t, you can watch the replay below. Please join us for our next discussion at the end of the month about the ways in which backpacking is fundamentally different for women than men. Topics we…

Trip Planning Tutorial: Join us March 6

By Katie Gerber / February 21, 2024 /

Join Andrew and I on March 6 for another tutorial livestream. The focus of this conversation is a deep dive on how to plan a backpacking trip. Join us on March 6 at 6:00pm MT here. Topic covered will include: Andrew draws from experience planning lengthy expeditions like the: And Katie from planning trips, such as:…

Ask Us Anything: Mikaela Osler

By Katie Gerber / December 1, 2023 /

Last night, Andrew and I hosted the last of our Ask Us Anything events this week. Our special guest was Mikaela Osler. Mikaela is a Triple Crown thru-hiker (AT, PCT, CDT), has set FKT’s on the Long Trail and Colorado Trail, is an excellent guide, and has an infectiously positive personality. In this conversation, we…

Ask Us Anything: Flyin’ Brian Robinson

By Katie Gerber / November 30, 2023 /

Yesterday Andrew and I hosted the second of this week’s Ask Us Anything. Our special guest was Brian Robinson, one of Andrew’s original guides who was the first person to complete the Calendar Year Triple Crown, in 2001 and the seventh Barkley Marathon finisher and former course record holder, and who completed the John Muir…

Ask Us Anything: Backpacking the High Sierra in 2023

By Andrew Skurka / May 27, 2023 /

Last week I wrote about the High Sierra’s record-breaking 2023-23 snowpack and its implications for trip planning, gear selection, and essential skills. In short, this season will be far from normal. Are you ready for that? This week Katie Gerber and I are hosting an “Ask Us Anything” online event to answer your questions about…

High Sierra record snowpack: Implications for trip planning, gear selection, and skills

By Andrew Skurka / May 25, 2023 /

As atmospheric rivers crashed into the High Sierra during the 2022-23 winter, I had two primary reactions. I was: In 2023 backpacking trips in the High Sierra will be more difficult and risky than identical itineraries in past seasons. However, it’s possible to accurately predict, entirely avoid, and/or safely manage the challenges. Personally, I think…

Video tutorial: Finding historical temp & precip date from NCEI

By Andrew Skurka / February 26, 2022 /

Last year the National Center for Environmental Information (NCEI) updated its website and launched two new tools for researching historical temperature and precipitation data. The good news is that the website is now more user-friendly; the bad news is that my older tutorial, posted in March 2021, is obsolete, so it’s time for a new…

Video tutorial: Research historical temperature & precipitation data

By Andrew Skurka / March 12, 2021 /

In a recent post on my favorite resources for researching the conditions that I will likely encounter on a backpacking trip, I plugged the Environmental Centers for Environmental Information, which tracks temperature and precipitation data for thousands of locations throughout the United States. It’s an extremely helpful website, but it can be difficult to navigate…

Template: Environmental & Route Conditions Assessment

By Andrew Skurka / March 2, 2021 /

Nineteen years ago at the start of my first real backpacking trip — an over-my-head thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail — I was simultaneously over-, under-, and mis-prepared, and had justified many decisions on the basis of what if and just in case. For example, I had three methods of purifying water but only “water-resistant”…